Mountain Marathons & Marathon Events

Are you tough enough to take on the challenge of a mountain marathon?  Mountain Marathons are the extreme fringe of fell running, and typically last for two days, during which time competitors will have to cover a large distance, cross country, over hills, navigating their own route.  

If this doesn’t sound hard enough, they usually have to carry their own food and tent – however, they do usually have a partner.  Competitors usually race in teams of two.

As you might expect, there are a limited number of races each year.  The UK’s leading mountain marathons include:

• The Lowe Alpine Mountain Marathon (LAMM) – this is held in the Scottish Highlands in June each year.
• The Saunders Lakeland Mountain Marathon (SLMM) – another summer race, held in the Lake District in early July each year.
• The Mourne Mountain Marathon – this race takes place in the Mourne Mountains, County Down, Northern Ireland in September.
• The Original Mountain Marathon (OMM) – the location varies each year – this event is held in the last weekend in October at different UK hill or mountain areas.

Most races offer a variety of different levels of challenge – for example, the Original Mountain Marathon includes Elite, A, B, C, D and Long, Medium and Short Score events.

Anyone interested in these races needs a variety of skills.  For starters you will need to endurance of a marathon runner, but you will also need considerable off road running experience – these are essentially extended fell running races.

In addition, you will need to be a competent off road navigator – losing your way can add miles to your race – while good first aid skills are also required.

If you can put all those skills together, you might have what it takes to take part in these most demanding of races.